WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made baffling statements during his speech before the US Congress, US State Department Deputy Spokesperson Marie Harf said.
“There were some sort of perplexing things that the Prime Minister said today, including that all sanctions will eventually be lifted on Iran. That is not the case,” Harf told journalists on Tuesday.
Harf asserted that even if an agreement with Iran is reached, sanctions for terrorism as well as human rights on other issues would remain in place.
Speaking before the US Congress on Tuesday, Netanyahu stressed that the international sanctions against Iran should not be removed until Tehran stops its aggression in the Middle East and the world.
Netanyahu called the currently negotiated deal with Iran a bad deal that will not prevent Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons.
“What he put out there was all rhetoric and nothing more,” Harf said.
US President Barack Obama, who did not attend the speech but saw the speech transcript, emphasized that it contained nothing new and lacked alternatives to the P5+1 group negotiations with Iran to reach a preliminary deal over the country’s nuclear program.
Currently, the P5+1 group, comprising of Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, France, China and the United States, is in intense diplomatic negotiations with Iran to reach a preliminary deal over the country’s nuclear program by the end of March.
The UN Security Council and a number of countries have imposed several rounds of sanctions on Iran for its alleged development of nuclear weapons, despite Iran repeatedly claiming that its uranium enrichment program is for peaceful purposes only.
The latest deadline for the P5+1 group and Iran to sign a comprehensive agreement ensuring that Tehran does not develop nuclear weapons has been set for July 2015.